Trujillo/Peru – Huánuco/Peru

Our two route-options are described equally from everybody we meet. We could take the shortest way along the coast, a well asphalted road with a flat profile. We would have a steady head wind and of many attractions of the country we would only see few. Second possibility would be to ride again up into the mountains – a heavy back land route one says, difficult dirt roads, passes far above 4000 m , cold weather, few possibilities to fill up the supplies. But on the other hand everybody praises the scenery as one of the most beautiful in South America. It did not take long to decide. After a trip to the beach of Huanchaco, where you can see the famous “Caballitos de Tortora”, the Tortora riders. ( Tortora is the name of the reed, which the fisher men use to tie their boats together) we leave Luchos “house of the cyclists” with the plan, to take the challenge of the more strenuous, mountainous route.

Our new companion is Alberto from Ecuador ( With him and his trailer we form again a nice group . It is the first time we meet Latin American bike travelers. In the “Casa de Ciclistas” we meet two Argentinians one Chilean and Alberto from Ecuador. The German bike travelers lead the nationality statistics here.

After Chao, a place, where the main street is been used as a Volleyball court, we leave the asphalt road. Around us nothing but desert, ahead of us the first debris mountains. After a stretch of dirt road, which is better to ride than some asphalt roads, follows a hard piece of work. The dirt road now is just rubble. One slips, finds no right lane and your body is shaking all over. We push the bikes uphill. The average speed is close to the one of a pedestrian. So for 80km you need easily 2 days. The fantastic scenery however compensates that effort. Mountains in all shapes, rock and sand in red, yellow, black, light-grey, rock tunnels, canons, only few meters wide, like the “Cañon del Pato”, the “duck canon”, where the two main mountain ranges stand face to face.

Especially on the first day, when we are riding again on asphalt, we just make 17 kilometers. The day before we had looked for a site to camp when it was already dawning. So we failed to see, that there were thorns all over – small in size, but hard and pointedly, each of them with 4 spikes arranged like a tetrahedra. They function perfectly, puncture our modern mattresses, flatten all three tires of Alberto (front wheel, rear wheel, trailer – up to 4 holes per inner tube). The spare inner tube is placed already, then problems with the repair set, the valve, the air pump. Then we ride 50m, then 7km up to next flat tires. So the day goes by. On top of that the local farmers are on strike. Where we are they stopped their demonstrations, but their left barricade remainders, stones, trees, glass and thorn bushes however do not facilitate the ride on a . The mentioned strike is also the reason, why we finish our day after 17km in the nice village Caraz at the late afternoon. The farmers block the road. Everything halts. We are advised, that it wouldn´t be a good idea to try to pass with our bikes. The farmers, which are on strike for higher prices in the sale of their products, are very rebellious. It could come to arguments, in which we would loose our equipment. Surely Alberto is a large talent when talking with people, however it could not become effective with the indigenous languages of the mountain peasants. Denise had experienced a similar situation during her Peru visit 2003. On donkey trailers and over side routes she was traveling, because the demonstrators stopped any traffic by force. Nobody wanted to drive a pregnant woman to the hospital, because the cars would be exposed to a stone hail. We hear from the news, that this time a pregnant woman had to die, because even ambulances were blocked. As announced previously, everything is over the next day, no problems. Only a few burned car tires witness the incidents.

Passing Peru’s highest mountains in the “Cordillera Blanca”, snow-covered 6000m peaks, it goes higher and higher into the mountains. During the day sunny and warm, the thermometer falls at nights above 4000m below the freezing point. The scenery inspires us particularly because of its permanent changes between desert and colored moon landscape, canons, snow-covered, rough mountains, extended, tundra-like plateaus, green mountains, mountains, which are covered with a multicolored patch carpet of agriculturally used surfaces. For me definitely one of the highlights of that now nearly 30000km long journey. Only the dogs are less inspiring. Yapping dogs running along with you can become a well-known annoyance for cyclists. Here what so ever they seem to be more aggressive. For the first time on the whole journey they bite into the cargo bags. Showing their teeth aggressively, they run toward us. At each hut we pass a whole group. Only by throwing stones we can chase them away – and if there is something more here than dogs, then stones.

Crossing the last pass near the city of Huánuco the road is blocked again, but this time not by rebellious, but dancing farmers – a family celebration in multicolored dresses and live music. We cannot refuse the firm grip and consistent pulling of an older woman, about half of my height, and join their dance for a while.

Then a long downhill stretch – 2000 altitude meters downwards, about 60 kilometers. Sounds like a dream for cyclists, however it is the opposite, because you ride down a rough, dusty gravel dirt road. When we are riding uphill, we are often using the stretch of the road close to the abyss, because there you find the best lane, here there is no escape. Despite a brave speed, full-suspended bikes are of great use here, we need more than 4 hours, a 4-hour Boxing fight, interrupted only by a flat tire and a fall from Denise. Except a scratch everything is fine. It was already her second torn pair of trousers on this tour. Completely covered with dust we reach Huánuco, presumably the end of the dirt road riding here in Peru. First of all a shower, as almost always – cold.


translated by Maik

pictures for this article: Trujillo/Peru – Huánuco/Peru : Fotos

19. Juli 2008 - Tom & Maik | english texts | Kommentare :: comments :: comentarios | Inhalt drucken

One Response to “Trujillo/Peru – Huánuco/Peru”

  1. 1 sandra742 9 September 2009 @ 15:22

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. :) Cheers! Sandra. R.

Leave a Reply


deutsch :: english :: español

Rubrik :: category :: categoría

Archiv :: archive :: archivo